JLF Triangle Blog

Appeals Court Rules For Cary, Says Throw The Bums Out If You Don’t Like Sign Ordinance

A federal appeals court has ruled for the Town of Cary and against the late David Bowden over his “Screwed by the Town of Cary” sign, which he charged violated his right to free speech.

The Fourth Circuit court found that the town government did not violate the First Amendment by fining the late David Bowden for the message he had painted on his house in 2009. Three judges unanimously overturned a lower-court decision in Bowden’s favor.

“We acknowledge that the Town’s Sign Ordinance, and in particular its application to Bowden, has aggravated some Cary residents who believe it excessively restrictive,” wrote Judge Albert Diaz. “But their recourse here lies with the ballot, not the Constitution.”

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